SpongeBob SquarePants: Battle for Bikini Bottom – Rehydrated is exactly what the title implies. It’s a remastered version, NOT a remake of the original Battle for Bikini Bottom that came out in 2003. Besides the new multiplayer mode added to the game, don’t head into the game expecting a whole new set of mechanics and features.
Unlike most who have reviewed this game I am a newcomer. The only time I have ever touched the original Battle for Bikini Bottom game was when my Dad got a demo disc for the original in a subscription to Xbox magazine. Although I never actually developed nostalgia towards the game, it does bring back some good memories of my brother and I taking turns with the demo. Besides, what better way to review a game than with a fresh set of eyes. No bias, just an honest review.
Story wise the game is pretty straight forward. Plankton creates an army of robots to help towards his plans of domination, but accidentally forgets to make them obey. The robots quickly overthrow the Chum Bucket, and rampage throughout various sections of Bikini Bottom. It is now up to SpongeBob, Patrick and Sandy to reclaim Bikini Bottom from the robot menace while assisting friends and characters from the show along the way.
Each of the characters have their own set of skills that will help you complete each level as you progress through the game. SpongeBob utilizes his bubbles for long-range attacks such as the bubble bowl, and cruise bubble. For short range attacks he has a spinning move and a ground pound. Sandy has the ability to glide for a short period after a double jump with her lasso, and can use it to grab and destroy enemies from a distance. She uses the art of karate for her basic moves, either a karate chop or a karate kick. Patrick can use throw fruit in order to solve various puzzles, attack enemies with his gut and can ground pound, like SpongeBob, but while also stunning enemies he can pick up and throw.
I was very surprised to see all the levels you could visit in the game. In the show you saw places such as Goo Lagoon, The Krusty Krab, The Chum Bucket and maybe even Rock Bottom more than once, so it wouldn’t surprise me to see them added in. The game however offers 15 levels for you to play through. I would have never expected to see levels like the Flying Dutchman’s graveyard, The Mermerlair and The Kelp Forest. Call me easy to impress, but it was exciting to see all the different places you could go. Each of the levels carry Golden Spatulas and Patrick’s socks which act as collectibles to find. Golden Spatulas won’t be to hard to achieve but I found myself in 2020 looking up old guides to find some of Patrick’s socks. To achieve some of them you have to do puzzles which can be challenging at times. A little challenge never hurt anybody though.
As I said before this game is a remaster NOT a remake, so the mechanics are similar to its 2003 counterpart. Platforming was always a blast with this game and it still is to this day. However I will say the hit detection in this game is pretty off sometimes, especially with SpongeBob’s bubble bowl. Load times are a bit long in my opinion too; the max time I’ve ever waited has been 15 seconds. Normally I’d be okay with this but it can get annoying whenever you die or fall out the map you have to wait that long to be thrown back into the game.
Graphically the game is beautiful. Each of the levels are filled with references from the show and have received a huge overhaul. It’s much brighter and overall pleasing. It’s the small details that get you. From the various idle animations SpongeBob, has to the shoes Gary has on from the episode “Your Shoes Untied”. Even memes such as caveman SpongeBob and dabbing made it into the game. Yeah I said it, dabbing.
Although this is predominantly a remastered game, a new multiplayer mode was added in. It’s a two player online or local co-op mode, in which you fight off various waves of robot bosses. In addition to the three main characters you have Gary, Mr.Krabs and Robot Plankton, each again with their own moves. It’s not as good as the single player mode but it is something to play for fun.
The music in this game is great and I absolutely love it. My favorites being Jellyfish Fields and the Bikini Bottom theme. Each soundtrack fits the level they were assigned. The voice acting is strong and powerful just like in the show. I was surprised that the voice actor for Mr. Krabs wasn’t at least redone for the remaster of the game, but I can’t penalize the game for something they might not have control of.
As someone who is not blinded by nostalgia I personally loved this game. It reminded me of Super Mario 64 or, at the least. Banjo and Kazooie. It’s a fun and entertaining platformer, whether you believe it’s just a kids game or not. There’s a reason why this game was called a classic and I can see why now. With its new paint job it just renewed its title. You have a few problems with the load times and hit detection, but that doesn’t take away from the fact that this game is amazing.
This game was tested and reviewed on Xbox. All of the opinions and insights here are subject to that version. Game provided by publisher.Want to keep up to date with the latest Xt reviews, Xt opinions and Xt content? Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube.